Salary Negotiating for Functional Medicine Jobs

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When it comes to Integrative and Functional Medicine jobs, there are a number of things to keep in mind to ensure fair and adequate pay. After all, demand is rising for Integrative and Functional Medicine jobs, and with that comes the need to navigate Functional Medicine-specific salary negotiations.  As a recruiter within the realm of Integrative and Functional Medicine for the past ten years, I’ve not only seen trends in hiring and compensation, but have also managed to come across a number of behaviors during the interview process that do not lend themselves to successful salary negotiations. Let’s take a closer look.

  1. Competitive Compensation

When I first started recruiting in this field, it was difficult for practices in Integrative and Functional Medicine to compete with conventional salaries. Times have definitely changed. This salary gap has now started to close, and now functional medicine jobs compete with conventional salaries, making it possible to spend more time with patients, transform health, and love what you do while maintaining the same salary and better quality of life. All of the opportunities that I’ve recruited for within the last few years have offered very competitive compensation and benefits packages.

So how do you go about ensuring that you’re getting adequately paid within such a booming industry? Here are three tips when it comes to effective salary negotiations for Functional Medicine Jobs.

  1. Define Your Requirements

The last few months, I’ve been busy recruiting and conducting a number of interviews.  When I ask a candidate for their salary requirement, the flow of the interview often takes a negative turn. And I completely understand why – candidates don’t want to make a deliberately low estimate of themselves, nor do they want to take themselves out of consideration. It’s a delicate balance.

The Integrative and Functional Medicine clients I work with want the salary offer to be commensurate with experience, and some offer bonus and productivity incentives. Therefore, they can’t provide an exact starting salary. If this is the case, I try to ensure the candidate’s salary requirement is within the range so I don’t waste their time, or my clients’. I know that some career consultants will recommend that a candidate state they are open, based upon the position and overall compensation package. But I disagree with this advice if you’re asked for a salary requirement.  There is a lot of time and energy that goes into the interview process, and it’s not smart to waste anyone’s time. You want to ensure you are within the range before proceeding.

  1. Understand the Total Compensation Package

Understanding the total compensation package is important in determining your requirement. If an employer doesn’t offer medical or dental benefits, or it’s a contract position, that will impact your threshold. The recruiter should present that information to you so you can take it all into consideration. You’ll also want to take into consideration the trade-off benefits. What are you willing or not willing to give up if you can wake up every day loving what you do, practicing medicine the way it was intended, and transforming people’s lives?  

As mentioned before, the good news is that all the jobs I’m recruiting for offer compensation that is competitive with conventional salaries within the medical profession.  

  1. Prepare  

So you’ve determined the position meets your requirements, you’ve progressed through the interview process, and the employer is going to extend an offer. Just as you prepared for your interviews, you’ll want to prepare for the salary negotiations. This will allow for a much better and mutually beneficial conversation. When the employer sees that you’ve taken their position into consideration as well as your own, they will be much more open to negotiate. Be prepared to answer the following questions:

What is your threshold?

What is your worth? What immediate value do you bring to the practice?

Can you hit the ground running?  Think about this from the perspective of the employer. The employer will lose revenue when you first start and are being trained. And depending on what your knowledge and experience is in the field, it can be a big hit to their bottom line. Are there metrics in place that allow increase in salary based on performance?

What immediate value do you bring to the practice?

By keeping all of these aspects of salary negotiation in mind, you will be coming to the negotiating table with the information and confidence needed to ensure a positive salary negotiation experience for your new Integrative and Functional Medicine Job.

Integrated Connections is the leading-edge healthcare staffing firm that specializes exclusively in Integrative and Functional Medicine career placements. We are the official “connector” in the field and actively seek to promote all available opportunities. Explore our Integrated Connections Academy for eCourses designed to support professionals in the field of Integrative, Lifestyle and Functional Medicine. Our goal is to connect you to the best opportunity for your skills and aspirations. Learn more at

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